What’s a cookie?
Cookies are small pieces of data that live in your web browser (web browsers include Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome and Safari).
Cookies are harmless text files. They can’t look into your computer or read any personal information or other material on your hard drive. Cookies can’t carry viruses or install anything harmful on your computer.
If you’d like to find out more about cookies, what they’re for and how to manage them, there’s an excellent explanation in Google’s good to know campaign, written in partnership with the Citizens Advice Bureau.
The different cookies we use
System cookies are created each time you visit us and are automatically deleted when you close your browser. They remember the fact you’ve visited and the selections that you make as you use the website.
Identification cookies help us remember who you are when you come back to visit us.
Web analytics / Marketing effectiveness cookies collect anonymous data to help us understand visitor behaviour, so we can make our website better. They tell us which parts of the Website visitors use the most and flag up any problems, so we can fix them quickly. They also tell us how customers find the Website (for example via social media platforms and search engines), so we know how effectively we are marketing.
Cookies for optimising the content shown on our website
We may wish to test a change or new feature on the site to see if it is effective before rolling it out to all our users. Cookies allow a random sample of site visitors to see it one way, and a different group another and ensure that you consistently get the same experience on repeat visits.
_gat (Google Analytics)
_ga (Google Analytics)
_gid (Google Analytics)
More info on the Google Analytics cookies can be found at the top of this page: https://developers.google.com/analytics/devguides/collection/analyticsjs/cookie-usage
(An anti-forgery token (prevent CSRF attack))
If you would prefer us not to set cookies on our website, you can disable them by changing your internet browser settings. How to do this will depend on the browser you are using, but the folowing is a step-by-step guide to the most popular browsers:
Microsoft Internet Explorer:
Click on the “Tools” menu
Select “Internet Options”
Click on the “Privacy” tab
Select the desired setting
Click on the Customisation menu at the top right of the page
Select “Show Advanced Settings” and then “Content Settings”
Select the desired settings under the “Cookies” heading.
Click on the “Tools” menu
Click on “Options”
Choose the desired options under the “Cookie” menu.
For all other browsers, please follow the instructions provided by the relevant browser, usually located within the “Help”, “Tools” or “Edit” facility.
If you do choose to disable cookies, this choice will only apply to the device you are using at the time. If you want to stop cookies being set on other devices, you will need to follow the relevant steps on each device. Please note that disabling cookies does not delete cookies from your browser, you will need to do this from within your browser.